Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)




M. Scott DeBerard


The present study was designed to assess the risk factors associated with carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). Toward this end, a wide range of putative occupational, biological , and psychosocial correlates of CTS was investigated using a case-control methodology. Cases were 87 patients from an orthopedic clinic with clinical symptoms and electrodiagnostic testing results suggestive of CTS. Controls were 74 gender-matched patients from the same orthopedic clinic, without clinical symptoms of CTS and normal electrodiagnostic testing results. Participants completed a self-report questionnaire that included eight potential occupational correlates (i.e., repetition, force, vibration, typing, lifting heavy loads, and standing on feet), 10 potential personological correlates (i.e., obesity, advocational exercise levels, diabetes, thyroid problems, arthritis, gynecological surgery, and menstrual complications), and 11 potential psychosocial correlates (i.e., depression, anxiety, somatization, health locus of control job satisfaction, and physical and mental health indices). Results of multiple logistic regression analyses revealed that occupational repetition , vigorous exercise, physical activities with wrist strain, physical health, and job satisfaction were significant predictors of CTS. In addition, obesity was a borderline significant predictor of CTS. Plausible explanations for the current findings, along with implications, are discussed .



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